A military jet has crashed in rural western Virginia, the Associated Press has reported.
Sheriff's Office dispatcher Becky Coynter told the AP authorities are heading to the site in Deerfield, about 135 miles northwest of Richmond, to search for the downed jet, and that witnesses heard a loud explosion early Wednesday, just before 9 a.m.
According to Coynter, military officials in Washington had told local authorities communications they had lost communication with a jet. Authorities do not know whether anyone was injured.
NBC News has reported the jet was an F-15C fighter that had been en route from Massachusetts to New Orleans when it crashed somewhere in the George Washington and Jefferson National Forest.
The jet had been a part of the 104th Fighter Wing of the Massachusetts Air National Guard, an Air Force spokesperson told WTSP 10 News. A one-person craft, the jet flew out of the Barnes Air National Guard Base in Westfield, Mass. These details have not yet been confirmed by state police, though a senior Pentagon official told Fox News the same details.
Emergency officials have also stated the Federal Aviation Administration warned the crash may release toxic fumes, with a dispatcher telling WTSP 10 News, "The fuel is supposed to be corrosive to human flesh. These planes are made with radioactive material."
Police have closed an area road, USA Today reported.